But devoting all that time to furthering his education also meant more chores around the house for his kids, no family vacations and asking his wife and family to cut back without his regular income.
"It's tough watching others sacrifice their lives so I can achieve my dreams," Post said.
Post's story of heading back to college later in life plays out routinely at places like
In 2011, more people in
While more and more college students are falling into this category, it's not a new phenomenon.
At the start of the 2000s, only 27 percent of undergraduates enrolled in U.S. colleges were considered "traditional" students, the
Post had once enrolled at
When his employer closed in 2010, he decided it was time to go back to college. On Saturday, he received a master's degree in teaching and served as the graduate student speaker during the ceremony.
"All of our students deal with the challenges of complex lives as they pursue their degrees," DiBello said.
After doing clerical work for more than 14 years,
Rivera, who addressed graduates as the undergraduate student speaker, had already done work as a Spanish translator and interpreter, but never had any formal training. The wife and mother of two boys wanted to perfect her skills and become a professional, but admitted there were times during her studies that she wanted to give up.
She received her bachelor's degree in cultural studies, with a concentration in Spanish language and culture, on Saturday.
"College at my age was not easy, but deep down inside I knew I had to win this race," Rivera said during her speech.
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